WHAT HAPPENED NEXT THE 2026 FIFA WORLD CUP
To prove he is serious about co-hosting the 2026 World Cup, Donald Trump puts Sepp Blatter in charge of preparations – his first role since Fifa banishment. Blatter hasn’t lost his touch: despite only four new stadiums being required, 38 are built. Each is a Trump Hotel with cones laid out in the car park for the football pitch. Blatter flees after pocketing 10 Stormy Danielses ($1.3 million in old money). A public outcry follows when it’s announced that, in line with US immigration laws, no teams with fixtures in Mexico will be permitted back into the USA for the knockout stage.
Trump is somehow still in office by the time the World Cup begins, but the opening ceremony is calamitous. It begins with Diana Ross getting another shot at the penalty she famously missed at the 1994 opening ceremony. The ball smashes a watching Melania in the face – doing more damage to the ball than the face. A fan attempting to propose to his girlfriend is then snipered for looking as though he’s about to kneel for the national anthem. And just before kick-off, it becomes clear the US has spent eight years preparing for the wrong kind of football. ‘Ohhh, you say football, we say soccer. Eh, let’s call the whole thing off!’ says Trump.
The tournament is largely dull, until Justin Trudeau picks himself as captain of Canada, provoking other world leaders to follow suit. They have their quirks on the pitch: Trudeau plays shirtless, Kim Jong-un has a small square of bodyguards jogging around him at all times, Sajid Javid attempts to play both right wing and centre at once (failing at both), and Trump doesn’t know the rules so sends Ivanka instead. He enjoys watching so much though that he takes a policy from it. ‘I decree the Mexico border wall will be made from scared-looking men clutching their testicles.’ — Guy Kelly